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WHO Technical Paper: Southeast Asia (SEA) Eye Health Situation Analysis

Published: 06.04.2022
Yuddha Sapkota IAPB South-East Asia Regional Coordinator
Vision test of a child of Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals

After completing the VISION 2020 period (1999 – 2020) in eye health, the global eye health community have more information and evidence, and on the challenges and opportunites to shape future eye health policy and plan. Those are WHO World Report on Vision published in 2019, the Lancet Global Commission on Eye Health, the World Health Assembly Resolution on Integrated people Centred Eye Care (IPEC) 2020, Inclusion of Eye Health Indicators; Effective Cataract Surgical Coverage (eCSC) and Effective Refractive Error Coverage (eREC)  as tracer Indicators of Universal Health Coverage and UN resolution 2021 “Vision for everyone by 2030” accelerating action to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG).

IAPB a global alliance of eye health has also formulated a new strategy 2030 In Sight – as a base on all those global eye health challenges, suggesting a framework, and road map for days ahead. IAPB strategy 2030 in Sight has embedded all those recommendations with the thematic approach to be adopted as Elevate, Activate, and Integrate eye health.

To accelerate the action and translate those resolutions in regional/national eye health policy and plan, WHO SEARO had planned a SEA regional meeting in the last quarter of 2021, which could not be held due to Covid pandemic surge in the region. The aim of the meeting was to come up with a regional resolution and eye health strategy of South East Asia to be adopted by member states in their respective countries.

The technical paperwork for the meeting was completed, with contribution from WHO SEA eye health experts’ group, LV Prasad Eye Institute, WHO collaborating Centre of the region and IAPB South East Asia. The paper is due to be published by WHO SEARO soon. The technical paper highlights the existing eye health situation of the region, and regional and national challenges and opportunities to implement WHO IPEC in national eye health services. It also assesses the eye health workforce situation, productivity and skill enhancement need and opportunity available in the region. The paper also suggests the monitoring framework on IPEC implementation and establish quality assurance in eye health services of the region.

We will share more details once it is published by WHO SEARO.

Image on top: Vision test of a child of Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals/ Sumon Francis Gomes

Photo Credits

Images submitted by the Optometry Council Of India.